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SHARING THE LOVE: Ayuda Foundation

Five-minute feature on acts of kindness by local or overseas based non-government individuals and organisations that have benefitted Jamaicans.

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Written and produced by the Radio Department of the Jamaica Information Service

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News for Week of April 17, 2022
We are here to inspire, motivate and uplift.

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Billions to soften COVID-19 blows to education in Jamaica

The Government has invested more than $1.8 billion to militate against learning loss across the education sector, said Minister of Education and Youth Fayval Williams.

“This figure does not include our continued support of online/media platforms and educational resources, which is $1.2 billion at the primary level and $1 billion at the secondary level,” she said.

“We know that it is not enough for schools simply to reopen their doors at what appears to be the end of COVID-19. Students will need tailored and sustained support to help them readjust and catch up after the pandemic,” said the minister.

In this regard, the Ministry continues to benefit from the support of international partners such as the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) in its efforts to provide quality education through technology and capacity building of teachers.


Mrs. Williams said UNICEF is supporting literacy and numeracy development through increased student access to learning resources, while UNESCO has provided training and the sharing of lessons learned from addressing the COVID pandemic in various jurisdictions.


Dunn’s River adds ‘Tek-A-Hike’ to attraction

Jamaicans and visitors to the island can now ‘Tek-A-Hike’ at the world-famous Dunn’s River Falls and Park in Ocho Rios, St. Ann.

Tek-A-Hike is the newest product offering, developed by the Urban Development Corporation (UDC), at the St Ann attraction. It offers a mixture of ecological tourism, health and wellness, and cultural heritage.

Director, Business Development at UDC, Dena Chatrie, said that the new product is a guided, one-hour-and-a-half hike that starts at the Tranquility Gardens and ends in the Dunn’s River Falls and Park Nursery. Here guests can purchase plants or adopt a tree as part of the park’s Reforestation and Conservation Programme.

She added that the hike is about two miles and is an experience that the entire family can enjoy, as along the trail there are several activities in which persons can participate.

“On the hike, you’ll learn about the flora, the fauna on the entire property, which is called the Belmont property, and the history of Dunn’s River in general,” said Ms. Chatrie.

She encouraged persons who wish to experience Tek-A-Hike to book ahead by visiting the website at Admission for adults is $3,500 and $2,000 for children.


Lucea gets ‘Paint the City, Paint the Town’

Lucea in Hanover has been refreshed to provide a more aesthetically pleasing environment for locals and visitors.

The improvement was done under the ‘Paint the City, Paint the Town’ project, which was officially launched by Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Desmond McKenzie.

The works included sprucing-up green and recreational spaces, painting murals to depict parish icons and landmarks, painting of the town’s seawall, and erecting a new sign at the Hanover Municipal Corporation building.

Repairs were also carried out at the Hanover transportation centre, which now has a new sign and a garbage disposal area. A new sign was also mounted at the Cleveland Stanhope Market and the facility was repainted and beautified to enhance the experience of vendors and shoppers.

The town of Hopewell was also given a facelift and the town’s market rehabilitated.

‘Paint the City, Paint the Town’ is a national beautification initiative, to be executed over a three-year period.

It will generate employment through repairs, mural painting, street-sign installation, improvement of selected markets, among other activities.

Minister McKenzie said he is elated that a concept, which was originally slated to only take place in the Corporate Area, has blossomed into a national programme that is positively impacting the lives of people living in rural Jamaica.

“We will continue the work to improve and to uplift rural communities right across the country. It is not the amount that we spend, it is what we get in return. So, take some pride in what is being put down in the town, it belongs to you,” he told the citizens.

He said other programmes and developments are coming to Hanover as the Government is determined to fulfill the promise of making Jamaica a “peaceful and prosperous country.”



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Boost for Ananda Alert under new MOU

The Child Protection and Family Services Agency and the multi-sectorial partners on the Ananda Alert system have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to provide a more effective response to the issue of missing children in Jamaica.

The parties have agreed to strengthen cooperation and information sharing on the reporting, investigation, and return/recovery of a child who becomes the subject of a missing person report.

Ananda Alert, implemented in 2009 to assist in ensuring the safe and speedy recovery of missing children, has seen a return or recovery rate of about 85 per cent.

Acting Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education and Youth, Maureen Dwyer said that the multi-sectoral and multi-agency approach is critical to effectively respond to the issue of missing children in Jamaica, as the factors contributing to child disappearances are wide and complex.

“Through this collaborative effort, we are signaling to Jamaica and the rest of the world that the issue of missing children is everybody’s concern. We have to get involved. We cannot stand aside and just bemoan the fact that our children are missing,” she said.

Ms. Dwyer noted that while the number of missing children has gradually trended downward, particularly between 2018 and 2021, there is still cause for concern.

Chief Executive Officer of the child protection agency, Rosalee Gage-Grey, said the MOU signing is another major step in furtherance of the mandate to safeguard the well-being of the nation’s children.

Africa's long post-COVID-19 climb

By Hippolyte Fofack

CAIRO – Despite the many lingering negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, the world economy bounced back in 2021, recording one of the strongest and most synchronized post-recession recoveries in decades. But while Africa shared in this upswing, an increasing array of risks threaten to derail the region’s economic progress in 2022.

The global economy grew by 5.9% last year, and in January the International Monetary Fund forecast 4.4% growth in 2022. Africa rebounded well in 2021 from its first recession in a quarter-century, with aggregate output increasing by 5.1%. The IMF predicts regional GDP growth of 3.9% in 2022.

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